As its subtitle suggests and should be pretty obvious, The Zimmerman(n) Telegram is a blog that primarily focuses on Nationalsism. But sometimes we must transcend that Nationalsism to take a broader perspective on the totality of baseball and the cornucopia of humorous delights it presents. Sometimes, we must embrace Internationalsism.
The World Baseball Classic is one of those times. Now, if you’re new to the WBC, you might be at risk of confusing it with the World Series. The World Series, like the World Baseball Classic, also involves baseball, and also is referred to as a Classic (of the Fall variety). The main difference between the two names is the sense in which the word “world” is used. In the World Series, “world” is appropriately used to describe the only places that are important: the United States and a tiny sliver of Canada. In the World Baseball Classic, “world” bizarrely refers to the entire earth, as if any of the rest of it was worthy of worldliness.
The Zimmerman(n) Telegram will be taking a unique approach to WBC coverage. We recognize that what makes the WBC so much fun is that the teams struggling against each other for supremacy in the tournament represent actual countries, who have fought actual battles/had actual diplomatic spats with each other, in which actual people died/were offended. Because of that, every game will be representative of some awful or mildly annoying historical event. Obviously, we have no choice but to find those events and metaphorize them.
During the regular season, when we want to use historical wars as metaphors, we have to first assign countries to each team and then pick a conflict. But for the WBC, the first half of that task has already been done for us. It’s almost too easy.
So when the “World” Baseball Classic pitches off tomorrow night, just sit back, relax, and wait for us to trivialize some tragedy! And never fear: we will of course also be carefully documenting the adventures of the three Nationals serving as ambassadors to this important international summit.